These listings are intended as a starting-point for exploration and research, since it is for individual exporters to assess which partner will be the right fit for their particular list and organisation. Distributors who currently confine their activities to Canadian publishers are included, both for the sake of completeness, and because policy may change to accommodate exceptions. French-language distributors are also included.
It should be noted that some distributors require potential client publishers to complete an application through the distributor’s website, to include a description of the applicant’s lists and other information e.g. promotional activity.
See the note at the end of this listing on definitions of ‘distributor’ and ‘wholesaler’.
Books In Hand
234 Eglinton Avenue East, Suite 401
Toronto, ON, M4P 1K5
Contact : Leila Bovee-Begun, LitDistCo General Manager
Branch of LitDistCo which offers services to non-members of the Literary Press Group of Canada (LPG, a not-for-profit association of literary publishers ) across all genres. Offer distribution only, ie not sales & marketing.
New name for Fernwood Books, national book marketing and sales company for Canadian universities and colleges. Represents Canadian and US publishers.
French Language Digital and Audio book distributor to schools, libraries, retailers, and the public (via its Aldiko IOS App)
Quebec based, French Language distributor of ebooks with more than 300 publishers from around the French speaking world and more than 3000 titles.
174 Spadina Ave. Suite 306
Toronto, ON, M5T 2C2
Aggregator of Canadian eBooks, distributed though retail vendors and wholesale partners.
Fitzhenry and Whiteside
195 Allstate Parkway
Markham, ON, L3R 4T8 Website: https://www.fitzhenry.ca/other-publishers Contact: Sonya Gillis, Publisher Relations Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Distributes US & Canadian Publishers (except for Grub Street in the UK) https://www.fitzhenry.ca/other-publishers
Fraser Direct / Jaguar Book Group (TM of Fraser Direct)
8300 Lawson Road
Milton, ON, L9T 0A4
Contact: Victoria Fraser, VP Business Development
Fraser direct is a large distribution company serving multiple industries. Within the Publishing Distribution division under the Jaguar Book Group name, FD has 60 publishers on client list from around the world, providing one stop shop to get books into the Canadian marketplace.
Literary Distribution Specialist for 26 members of the Literary Press Group of Canada (LPG, see above at Books in Hand).
McCarney & Associates
124 Ulster Drive
Oakville, ON. L6L 3P2
Distributor of Canadian elementary, secondary, and public library resources. Specialising in “Canadiana” as supplementary resources to the curriculum, working with school boards, consultants, librarians, and teachers. Represent over 50 publishers as sales agents http://www.mccarneyandassociates.com/publishers.html
Nimbus is a Canadian publishing company which offers distribution for 12 Canadian Publishers
Publishers Group Canada (a division of Raincoast Book Distribution)
201-128A Sterling Road
Toronto, ON, M6R 2B7
Offers full-service Canadian distribution to over 150 independent and speciality publishing houses worldwide. Operates separate sales, marketing, and publicity teams from Raincoast’s, but shares Raincoast operational systems. Has a close relationship with PPGW/Perseus Books Group in the USA.
Raincoast Book Distribution Inc
9050 Shaughnessy St.
Vancouver, BC, V6P 6E5
Contact: Allan MacDougall, Executive VP
Raincoast Books works with large and medium sized trade publishers who are well established in their home market, offering a full service of sales, marketing, customer service, warehousing, inventory management, shipping, and accounts receivable across the whole of Canada. Raincoast works with online and physical bookstore, chains and independents, libraries, and speciality stores. https://www.raincoast.com/publishers/
University of Toronto Press
5201 Dufferin Street
Toronto, ON, M3H 5T8
Contact : Jacqueline Courtney – Manager, Client Services
Represents more than 70 book imprints for distribution in Canada, the United States, and around the world. UTP maintains facilities in Toronto with more than 60,000 square feet of warehouse space, and a Buffalo, New York, location for expediting incoming and outgoing U.S. shipments.
BOOKEXPRESS (a WHOLESALE division of RAINCOAST BOOK DISTRIBUTION)
9050 Shaughnessy St.
Vancouver, BC, V6P 6E5
Stocks 4,000 titles from over 50 publishers
Library Bound Inc.
100 Bathurst Dr. Unit 2
Waterloo, ON, N2V 1V6
Contact: Ron Stadnik, Print Manager
Canada’s largest library supplier solely dedicated to serving the needs of public libraries.
United Library Services
7140 Fairmount Dr. SE
Calgary, AB, T2H 0X4
Contact: Robin Hoogwerf, General Manager
Supplier serving the public library and school market (English and French Books).
A note on definitions in the field of distribution
The Export Toolkit includes a glossary of exporting terms, to which the reader is referred. For clarity and ease of access, we also offer this note here:
The listings above include (a) distributors as defined below (b) publishers with divisions that act as distributors for client publishers (c) wholesalers. For clarity, there follow extended definitions, since the words ‘distributor’ and ‘wholesaler’ are sometimes used interchangeably, which can cause confusion. The main US wholesalers Ingram and Baker & Taylor have established separate publisher services divisions to represent client publishers in the market, and thus they have become distributors as well as wholesalers.
‘Distributor’: within these listings ‘distributor’ means
A company located in an overseas territory or region which
- Comes to a contractual agreement with a publisher to warehouse, sell, market, and distribute the publisher’s list, and collect monies owed, in the territory concerned
- Operates mostly on an exclusive basis within that territory on behalf of the publisher. ‘Exclusive’ means that no other distributor within that territory will be appointed by the publisher to fulfil the same functions (this principle of exclusivity is the norm in the major English-language markets around the world, including some where the main publishing and bookselling language is English. Elsewhere, non-exclusive arrangements may be agreed.)
- Is a customer of the publisher
- Sells on to its own wholesale and retail customer base within the territory, which recognises the distributor as acting for the publisher in that territory
- May operate either on the basis of purchasing stock from the client publisher and selling it on into the territory; or on a ‘consignment’ basis, where the stock held by the distributor remains the property of the client publisher until it is sold and then accounted for to the publisher.
- May also act as distributor for publishers located in its home market
- May also act as distributor into international markets for certain clients, mainly those located in its home market.
The term ‘Distributor’ is sometimes used as simply = wholesaler. A wholesaler may call itself a distributor, but that simply means wholesaler as defined below. Certain regional, niche or specialist wholesalers/sub-wholesalers who describe themselves as distributors sometimes do have a product sales capability, but they rarely act as distributors as defined above, and they do not appear in this listing. Larger wholesalers appear in this listing because of their overall importance in the supply chain, and because (as noted above) the two market leaders, Ingram and Baker & Taylor, also have distribution divisions for US and overseas publishers. Some library suppliers also call themselves wholesalers, though they are supplying libraries direct and not the retail book trade.
A company which
- Purchases product from a range of publishers and distributors, mostly those in its home market, at wholesale discounts off retail price (that is, mostly but not always higher discounts than those granted to retailers)
- Sells those products on to a domestic and/or international retail customer base, and sometimes to regional and/or specialist sub-wholesalers, who in turn sell on to their customers
- Is a customer of the publisher
- Acts as a one-stop shop for retailers, minimising those customers’ administration costs
- Does not sell or market particular products apart from occasional international superleads
- Sells a service of consolidation and convenience